MBA 13 life expectancy

ThomasSaysHi

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jan 16, 2012
5
0
Hi forum,

I will be (most likely) purchasing a MBA 13" Low end model within a few weeks, but just wanted to clear some questions before I take the plunge.

Given that the MBA is virtually impossible to upgrade, as well as having a realatively low power CPU, how long can I expect it to work (smoothly enough to complete general tasks at a acceptable speed)?

My only fear is that it will only last 1.5-2 years before it starts becoming very slow, and I have no way to upgrade it. I would like it to last at the very least 3 years, and Im hoping for 4. Or is this something I shouldnt be worried about...



Thanks
 

PBG4 Dude

macrumors 68030
Jul 6, 2007
2,769
1,975
I have a MacBook from 2006 that still gets daily use today. It can't run Lion due to its 32 but CPU but it runs Snow Leopard fine. It is on its second battery though.
 
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KPOM

macrumors Pentium
Oct 23, 2010
15,019
3,422
The CPU in the 2011 MacBook Air is nearly as powerful as the CPU in the 2010 MacBook Pro. Sandy Bridge was a new CPU architecture in late 2010. What are you running on it?

Remember that the Core 2 Duo still held its own in late 2010, nearly 5 years after it was released. I would expect that the Sandy Bridge processor will still be capable of running typical productivity, photo editing, and media software in 3 years time. As for Internet, remember that it doesn't take much power to run a web site. It tends to be hard core applications like gaming that tax CPU and GPU power. The MacBook Air isn't a gaming PC even today.
 
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calvol

macrumors 6502a
Feb 3, 2011
991
2
I'm going for five years on my 2010 MBA, the most likely electronics failure would probably be a logic board failure, and the most likely physical failure would be damage to the display, both of which would be expensive to repair.
 
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ThomasSaysHi

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jan 16, 2012
5
0
Thanks for the speedy replies guys,

its what I had thought, but a little extra peace of mind is always nice.

also, i know this question is on this forum practically every other day, but is it really worth waiting an extra 3-6 months for the new revision? is it really going to be a major overhaul? if its a body redesign and a dedicated gpu plus retina display and 8gb ram it might be worth the wait, but i would rather have my mac for an extra 5 months then have a little extra processor speed.

and finally, im thinking of investing in a time capsule because a) i need a new router, b) i need an external drive with such a small SSD on the MBA, and c) automatic back up is great, but Im just wondering if it works as a router for a PC? I dont need the backing up or even the drive, but if it works as a router for my PC as well, it would save me having to get a new Windows router as well.

thanks.
 
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aethelbert

macrumors 601
Jun 1, 2007
4,288
0
Chicago, IL, USA
Thanks for the speedy replies guys,

its what I had thought, but a little extra peace of mind is always nice.

also, i know this question is on this forum practically every other day, but is it really worth waiting an extra 3-6 months for the new revision? is it really going to be a major overhaul? if its a body redesign and a dedicated gpu plus retina display and 8gb ram it might be worth the wait, but i would rather have my mac for an extra 5 months then have a little extra processor speed.
Simply put, if you are happy with the current model at the current price, the you should certainly buy one today. Nobody knows what is coming down the pipeline aside from Ivy Bridge. It's totally your call. If you need the computer now, it only makes sense to get it now so long as you think the price is fair.

and finally, im thinking of investing in a time capsule because a) i need a new router, b) i need an external drive with such a small SSD on the MBA, and c) automatic back up is great, but Im just wondering if it works as a router for a PC? I dont need the backing up or even the drive, but if it works as a router for my PC as well, it would save me having to get a new Windows router as well.
Apple's routers work fine with Windows/Linux PCs. They send the same wireless signals as any other router. The drive on the Time Capsule can also work with computers on other operating systems, but keep in mind that it won't back up the Windows systems onto the installed hard disk. Windows systems can access it as a network drive, but it will take a bit of work on your end.
 
Comment

halledise

macrumors 65816
Hi forum,

I will be (most likely) purchasing a MBA 13" Low end model within a few weeks, but just wanted to clear some questions before I take the plunge.

Given that the MBA is virtually impossible to upgrade, as well as having a realatively low power CPU, how long can I expect it to work (smoothly enough to complete general tasks at a acceptable speed)?

My only fear is that it will only last 1.5-2 years before it starts becoming very slow, and I have no way to upgrade it. I would like it to last at the very least 3 years, and Im hoping for 4. Or is this something I shouldnt be worried about …

Thanks
it'll run no slower in 2 to 3 years than it does now when new.
if it does, backup your data, erase the HDD and do a fresh install of the OS and all your Apps, then add in your data.
voila - brand new, factory defaults, snappy Air.

for 'general tasks' the Air is more than enough.

the current Air would easily be good for 3 to 4 years - unless of course you drop it in the meantime - or sit on it.

I'd be getting AppleCare 3 year warranty and then you'd have complete peace of mind.
and if you did see something that took your eye within that period, you have a nice Air to sell that's still under warranty :)
 
Comment

Macman45

macrumors G5
Jul 29, 2011
13,199
133
Somewhere Back In The Long Ago
I expect my MBA to last a good 4-5 years, maybe longer. Take care of the battery and you should have no issues.

As for waiting...Well, only you can really make that call. Knowing me my present Air will be replaced long before it's time is up hardware wise:)
 
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ThomasSaysHi

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jan 16, 2012
5
0
Alright thanks, guess I'll be ordering it next paycheck then! :)

What are some ways that I can "take care" of the battery. Is keeping it constantly plugged in a bad idea?
 
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lolwut89

macrumors member
Jan 13, 2012
50
0
My sister has her Macbook white from 2006 with a Core Duo. I think it's pretty much falling apart but it runs fine for her. Her only complaint is that she can't upgrade iTunes on it because she's still running OS X Tiger.
 
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Hellishness

macrumors 65816
Jan 27, 2010
1,086
0
Bay Area, CA
As much as possible, use it plugged in. Never leave it plugged in when you're not using it. Cycle the battery every so often. 100% Health when I sold my air 6 months later.
 
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jeremyshaw

macrumors 6502
Oct 29, 2011
340
0
My Apple IIe from 1984 still works.
Not a laptop, neither does it have a Li-Ion-Poly (or just LiPoly) battery. Nor is it even made by the same factory. Likely not designed by the same engineers, either.
 
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thekev

macrumors 604
Aug 5, 2010
6,771
2,042
My Apple IIe from 1984 still works.
Computer parts in that era were made to a completely different standard of quality. I mean it is impressive, but hardware built today is not built to last. It's built to be cost effective. No matter what your thoughts are on the quality of macs, they're built from the same components as other computers. We've all seen the logic board threads on here.
 
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jbzoom

macrumors newbie
Sep 30, 2010
18
0
Mumbai, India
3 - 4 yr life probably OK

Hi forum,

I will be (most likely) purchasing a MBA 13" Low end model within a few weeks, but just wanted to clear some questions before I take the plunge.

Given that the MBA is virtually impossible to upgrade, as well as having a realatively low power CPU, how long can I expect it to work (smoothly enough to complete general tasks at a acceptable speed)?

My only fear is that it will only last 1.5-2 years before it starts becoming very slow, and I have no way to upgrade it. I would like it to last at the very least 3 years, and Im hoping for 4. Or is this something I shouldnt be worried about...



Thanks
My 2008 Macbook Air 13 just died - 3.6 years. Upgrades to Snow Leopard and Lion kept it adequate for my needs.
 
Comment

rwwest7

macrumors regular
Sep 24, 2011
134
0
Something with no moving parts should last a lot longer than something with a moving part that is always spinning at 70 mph. The batter is replaceable, you just have to pay about $170. The Airs should last longer than the regular MacBooks, IMO.
 
Comment

FuNGi

macrumors 65816
Feb 26, 2010
1,112
28
California
Yeah, I expect the 2010/11 Air's to last quite awhile - maybe 5 yrs. My GF actually dropped her 11" and it only got a small dent. However, like all machines there is always a small possibility of a component failure earlier. Repairs might be expensive for the soldered logic board outside of Applecare but the probability of needing it is quite low. Another perk is that you can upgrade the SSD in a couple years to accommodate growth in data etc. Hopefully the SSD's will be cheaper by then.
 
Comment

nutjob

macrumors 6502a
Feb 7, 2010
980
458
Hi forum,

I will be (most likely) purchasing a MBA 13" Low end model within a few weeks, but just wanted to clear some questions before I take the plunge.

Given that the MBA is virtually impossible to upgrade, as well as having a realatively low power CPU, how long can I expect it to work (smoothly enough to complete general tasks at a acceptable speed)?

My only fear is that it will only last 1.5-2 years before it starts becoming very slow, and I have no way to upgrade it. I would like it to last at the very least 3 years, and Im hoping for 4. Or is this something I shouldnt be worried about...



Thanks
On average it's warranty period + 1 day.
 
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